Leave It To Beavers!!

Now-a-days when people have protruding front teeth, a visit to the dentist starts a series

They may be buck, but they are powerful.

They may be buck, but they are powerful.

of trips to his office, the wearing of braces, and such a condition is fixed. But if this isn’t done, a person is said to have buck teeth. This is not always a derogatory comment, in fact, it is called “buck” because the male rabbit is a buck and he has them. He couldn’t chomp away on carrots without them. A beaver, exempt of them, would be unable to down the trees required for him to build dams.

I know readers of “Shirl and You” often wonder how I come up with a new subject to write about every week. Well, this one Beavers2started with a trip to Sonestown, PA, on Rt. 220, on the way to Williamsport. We were headed for the town’s Harvest Festival. Sonestown once had a tannery and the Climax locomotive which transported people from there to Eagles Mere, a nearby resort area. It’s now a very small town, with one main street. During the Festival, at every home, a yard sale was being conducted, truly Americana at its best. Now, we’re getting to the reason why I’m writing this week’s “Shirl and You” and why it begins with sentences about buck teeth.

Somehow, at such events, my husband nearly always finds something of interest to buy. Beavers 14I’ll get to what that something is but first, you’ve got to know that at the same sale, was an item that caught our eye, but in no way was something we would buy. That something was a beaver that had paid a visit to a taxidermist, and looking quite natural in its setting. That did, however, revive our interest in beavers and returning home, we watched a video called, “Leave It To Beavers.”

He looked big to me, but the woman manning the sale said he was only medium size. They grow 30 to 51 inches in length and weigh 40 to 60 pounds. Their lifespan is up to 24 years, but they live only 5 to 10 years in the wild. Their tail may be 16 inches long and 5 to 7 inches wide. In the video, we watched as as one of them pushed mud, branches, etc, in place with their tail and warned

A beaver's tail.

A beaver’s tail.

a huge moose to go away by splashing water on him. A person may become upset with a beaver that floods their property or chews on their aspens. But that’s what beavers do, they build dams. Beavers are second only to humans in their ability to manipulate and change their environment. Their dams can turn a desert into a flourishing, green area. Of course, they may decide that your private pond needs reconstructing and could soon have it overflowing. Years ago, that is actually what happened to us. It is open hunting season for beavers and sheared beaver fur makes beautiful coats. Animal fur hats were popular years ago, when people even slept in them and I read that men’s felt hats are made of sheared beaver fur.

There’s much more to be said about beavers, but I won’t keep you wondering any longer

Sometimes the strops are made like paddles. Kids would hear: "Do you want be to get the paddle?"

Sometimes the strops are made like paddles. Kids would hear: “Do you want me to get the paddle?”

what it was my husband bought at the yard sale. Maybe it was looking at the beaver’s tail that caused his interest in a razor strop. Now how often do you find these at a yard sale? A razor strop (or razor strap) is a flexible strip of leather or canvas used to straighten and polish the blade of a straight razor, a knife or a woodworking tool like a chisel. Being a craftsman, my husband enjoys keeping his tools sharp.

The strop has CCCP  imprinted on it and the word Russia. I read where that means the strop has a Russian finish but never came

A shaving strop, made to hang on a barber's chair.

A shaving strop, made to hang on a barber’s chair.

close to Russia. Knowing how to use a straight razor and how to keep it sharp on the strop is all demonstrated on the internet. Right now, “our strop” hangs on the corner of our brick fireplace. The leather looks tough and almost brand new and from what I could learn it probably was made in the 1950’s.

Could the beaver tail have influenced my husband’s buying? A beaver tail means more than what you are thinking. It sometimes is the name for a pistol grip, a pastry, sold throughout Canada, a state park in Rhode Island., a flatbed truck and a type of a snowshoe. I will say this, though, it looks like, and is a strap of leather.

To all you “eager beavers” out there, I hope you are enthusiastically reading this Shirl and You and will “work hard” to make me happy as Beavers10jpgyou make a comment or two about this post. Click on the heading, scroll down to the bottom and type your comment in the box provided for it.

See you next week on “Shirl and You.”

P.S. When you make a trip to Sonestown, PA, Don’t miss their 120 ft. covered bridge. We missed it, so we will enjoy another trip there. Oh, and if you go, look for the beaver, too.

Meeting a beaver at a yard sale is not a daily occurrence, but here a photo to prove it really happened to me.

Meeting a beaver at a yard sale is not a daily occurrence, but here’s a photo to prove it really happened to me.

8 thoughts on “Leave It To Beavers!!

  1. Sky Lake in Windsor,N.Y. was our conference church camp. I was a camper and later a counselor for Special Needs campers. There was a section of the lake that the beavers loved to dam up…it would be taken down…but the beavers would build it up again. It was a trip to watch them busy at work.


  2. When I was living at home, I use to watch Leave it to Beaver on TV. I have never had my picture taken with a beaver but I have seen a beaver dam a few times. I own a razor strap but I have never used it. I just think they are cool to look at and it belonged to Nita’s father. One of my friends from high school we called Buck and he still goes by that name. Buck was in the Army and served in Vietnam and he lives just a few miles from our home. I have several hats and wear them often but none of them a made from beaver skin. Oh, and thanks for your post about beavers, I have never written anything about beavers, well, until now.


  3. Whenever I’m with my grandchildren and it’s time to brush their teeth I always sing the Ipana Toothpaste jingle….that’s going back a bit. The cartoon mascot was Bucky Beaver, i believe. I’ve never been particularly interested in beavers but read your blog with interest and delight. Never realized they grew so big. Watching “Lady & the Tramp” one never would have thought!


    • Loved your comments, Kathleen. I’ve never met Buck Beaver, but I have a feeling I know what he looks like and that he has a mouth full of teeth that need cleaning. Glad you enjoyed Shirl and You.


    • Yes, it would be difficult NOT to find something that interests your dad. He likes and enjoys (and learns about) so many things. I don’t know if beavers bite people, but I do know that they allow other creatures besides themselves to weather the winter in their mounds. Fascinating rodents.


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